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Expired Oil

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Hello,

I just purchased some oil and grease and was hoping for some advice about expiration dates, given that both oil and grease are expired.  I must say I was a bit disappointed about this since everything I've read says that you must have the freshest possible oils.

Here's the oil:

Moebius 8000/4 Expired this month (03/2019)
Moebius 8300 grease expired in 10/2018

Now the distributor got back to me with the following:
 

Quote

It is only within the last 2 years that Moebius has decided to put expiry dates on their oils. For the previous 50 years, they have never put expiry dates on their oils.
Currently we cannot supply any newer oils with better expiry dates.  I am positive that both these oils are good and can be used without hesitation. If you have any concerns about using these oils, then 
please return them for credit, and we will be pleased to credit them in full.  To replace them with new oils, we will need to order them from Switzerland, which could take between 4 to 6 weeks.
 

Should I expect fresh oil/grease, or will this be fine for me to use as I learn how to repair my own watches?

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I would expect to get oil/grease with enough shelf life to make it usable, if buying new, for example I have 9415 I bought last year that expires in 2022, some Fixodrop I just bought that is good til 2021. The 9415 will almost certainly be barely half used by 2022.

Prior to the application of expiration dates I don't think anyone gave it much thought. I know a very fastidious pro who had a policy of changing the oil in his cups once a week at least, and replacing oil bottles that had been opened once a year. Makes sense in that the oil cups are quite exposed, and an opened bottle that has been dipped into dozens of times will almost certainly be somewhat contaminated regardless of how careful one is.All that said, I truly believe that sealed lubricant is good indefinitely, and you have nothing to worry about. There are many fans of the old Elgin m56b oil, which hasn't been produced in 40-50 years.

Edited by nickelsilver

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If you are just using them on your own watch I would just go for it! They obviously will not preform to the same degree as synthetic oils and will probably require the watch to be serviced sooner.  

I would also recommend that you get an oil with a viscosity between the 8000/4 and the 8300 for use on the center wheel and barrel arbour. When I first started I used clock oil for that.

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Thanks of the advice!  I'll make sure to keep the unopened oil safe from light and heat then and just observe it.  Makes me really wish I had the equipment to perform along term test of viscosity on such small oil samples, it would be really interesting to see how they degrade over time.

32 minutes ago, LiamB said:

If you are just using them on your own watch I would just go for it! They obviously will not preform to the same degree as synthetic oils and will probably require the watch to be serviced sooner.  

I would also recommend that you get an oil with a viscosity between the 8000/4 and the 8300 for use on the center wheel and barrel arbour. When I first started I used clock oil for that.

I was planning on getting 8141 or D5 for that once I've demonstrated I can make a watch run, although in hindsight I perhaps should have started with that rather than 8300.  Oh well!

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i know people who still use elgin M56B

2 hours ago, nickelsilver said:

I would expect to get oil/grease with enough shelf life to make it usable, if buying new, for example I have 9415 I bought last year that expires in 2022, some Fixodrop I just bought that is good til 2021. The 9415 will almost certainly be barely half used by 2022.

Prior to the application of expiration dates I don't think anyone gave it much thought. I know a very fastidious pro who had a policy of changing the oil in his cups once a week at least, and replacing oil bottles that had been opened once a year. Makes sense in that the oil cups are quite exposed, and an opened bottle that has been dipped into dozens of times will almost certainly be somewhat contaminated regardless of how careful one is.All that said, I truly believe that sealed lubricant is good indefinitely, and you have nothing to worry about. There are many fans of the old Elgin m56b oil, which hasn't been produced in 40-50 years.

the M56B is a synthetic oil, synthetics dont gum up and the break down takes an extremely long time and its very little so they dont exactly expire, 8000 is made up of natural oils that will degrade over time. however a couple months maybe a year for the 8000, anything older than that may still be ok but i wouldnt take any chances. a new bottle cost $10 so just be safe and get a new bottle.

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I too bought moebius 8000 when I started out, thinking it was the cheaper option and did the same job as 9010. I bought 4 bottles and I’ve barely dented the first one, but I can tell you its expiry date is Feb 2015... so they’ve been putting dates on it for more than a couple of years.

I recently (some time in the last 6 months) bought some 9010. This has a much longer shelf life and it expires in October 2023.

Personally, I would return the 8000 and buy some 9010 from somewhere that has a high stock turnover. However, unless you turn out to be a master watchmaker in a very short space of time it’s unlikely you’ll notice any difference :-)

 

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17 minutes ago, saswatch88 said:

he M56B is a synthetic oil, synthetics dont gum up and the break down takes an extremely long time and its very little so they dont exactly expire

If you look at the early Moebius Advertisements they claim their synthetic oils going by memory basically never go bad. But it's that's not entirely correct and there's another problem? The other problem for all of lubrication's is contamination. Like getting the oil out of the bottle usually insert something in that's a source of contamination. It's why Rolex supplies a lot of the lubricants in a syringe to prevent that. Contamination in the watch with time so the lubrication isn't going to last forever in a watch.

The problem with the expiring date is the meaning isn't entirely clear? In other words service a watch on the day the oil expires does that mean the watch expires? Basically is a use by this date then the watch itself can go another five years or more.

So for personal use I found that the Moebius Lubricants I had lasted at least 20 years until I was at a lecture where I was informed that it should be replaced much more often than that. So I replaced all my lubricants with brand-new lubricants and have decided that based on the cost and estimated life that unless I see a decrease of performance on a timing machine for personal watches I'm not going to worry about the date on the bottle. On the other hand at work especially because I'm not paying for the oil if the bottle says it's expired we will purchase new oil it's cheap insurance and it's a professional expense cost of doing business.

 

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In an unopened condition, I would suggest that the only contamination that would enter the oil would have to come from the seal, or if the seal is imperfect, then through the seal,  from the atmosphere. The bottle should be inert.

Once opened, all bets are off in terms of contamination.

If you genuinely want to get your oil analysed whether old, or new, you could do worse than read this article, and then send it to these guys.

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3 hours ago, JohnR725 said:

If you look at the early Moebius Advertisements they claim their synthetic oils going by memory basically never go bad. But it's that's not entirely correct and there's another problem? The other problem for all of lubrication's is contamination. Like getting the oil out of the bottle usually insert something in that's a source of contamination. It's why Rolex supplies a lot of the lubricants in a syringe to prevent that. Contamination in the watch with time so the lubrication isn't going to last forever in a watch.

The problem with the expiring date is the meaning isn't entirely clear? In other words service a watch on the day the oil expires does that mean the watch expires? Basically is a use by this date then the watch itself can go another five years or more.

So for personal use I found that the Moebius Lubricants I had lasted at least 20 years until I was at a lecture where I was informed that it should be replaced much more often than that. So I replaced all my lubricants with brand-new lubricants and have decided that based on the cost and estimated life that unless I see a decrease of performance on a timing machine for personal watches I'm not going to worry about the date on the bottle. On the other hand at work especially because I'm not paying for the oil if the bottle says it's expired we will purchase new oil it's cheap insurance and it's a professional expense cost of doing business.

 

yes of course contamination, i was referring to an unopened bottle in my post, and i agree if its expired get a new bottle esp if it has been used and bottle was opened many times. but i can be cheap so i let them go for a year after expiartion, if i see any debris or discoloration i get a new bottle asap

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I think Moebius must have learned to sell snake oil before moving onto horological oils. The only possibility I can think of is where natural oils oxidise and turn acidic. 

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Hi, at present I am working on a Seiko 6319a movement and have no idea as to the correct oils to use on this movement ? Any advice gratefully received. Many thanks. 

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8 minutes ago, Johnnie said:

Hi, at present I am working on a Seiko 6319a movement and have no idea as to the correct oils to use on this movement ? Any advice gratefully received. Many thanks. 

It's always best if you're going to change the subject to start a new discussion as you have a greater audience to answer your question.

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21 minutes ago, JohnR725 said:

It's always best if you're going to change the subject to start a new discussion as you have a greater audience to answer your question.

Yes and the mods can split,  or remove duplicate postings.

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It is only within the last 2 years that Moebius has decided to put expiry dates on their oils.

I guess that's a down-to-heart, absolutely correct and honest correct answer from Cousins UK. No problem is naming sellers here, in this case I totally agree with them.

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